Big, Wild, and Connected
6 x 9
3 photos, 1 illustration
6 x 9
3 photos, 1 illustration
In 2011, adventurer and conservationist John Davis walked, cycled, skied, canoed, and kayaked on an epic 10-month, 7,600-mile journey that took him from the keys of Florida to a remote seashore in northeastern Quebec. Davis was motivated by a dream: to see a continent-long corridor conserved for wildlife in the eastern United States, especially for the large carnivores so critical to the health of the land.
In Big, Wild, and Connected, we travel the Eastern Wildway with Davis, viscerally experiencing the challenges large carnivores, with their need for vast territories, face in an ongoing search for food, water, shelter, and mates. On his self-propelled journey, Davis explores the wetlands, forests, and peaks that are the last strongholds for wildlife in the East. This includes strategically important segments of disturbed landscapes, from longleaf pine savanna in the Florida Panhandle to road-latticed woods of Pennsylvania. Despite the challenges, Davis argues that creation of an Eastern Wildway is within our reach and would serve as a powerful symbol of our natural and cultural heritage.
Big, Wild, and Connected reveals Eastern landscapes through wild eyes, a reminder that, for the creatures with which we share the land, movement is as essential to life as air, water, and food. Davis’ journey shows that a big, wild, and connected network of untamed places is the surest way to ensure wildlife survival through the coming centuries.
"Makes a convincing case that big predators need to be allowed back into the forests to restore a natural balance to both flora and fauna...Still, Connected is no head-in-the-clouds screed. It is a comprehensive look at eastern biology and, liberally peppered with suggestions for further reading, is a valuable resource for understanding a grossly underreported problem in these forests."
Acknowledgments and Dedication
Introduction to the Print Edition
PART I: From the Florida Peninsula to the Coastal Plain
Introduction. Why I Chose the Wildway: Background to a Long Trek
Chapter 1. Where the Panther Still Prowls: Greater Everglades Ecosystem, Florida
Chapter 2. No Preservation without Representation: Longleaf Pine Savanna and Southeast Coastal Plain Waterways
Chapter 3. Red Wolf Realm: Southeast Coastal Plain and Piedmont
Chapter 4. Our Biggest Parks Not Big Enough: Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the Southern Appalachians
PART II: From the Central Appalachians to the Catskill Mountains
Introduction. Still Moving After All These Miles: Into the Central Appalachian Mountains and Foothills
Chapter 5. Securing an Appalachian Arc: Wildlands Philanthropy on the Edge of Appalachia
Chapter 6. A Forest Hungry for Cougars: West Virginia Highlands and Larger Central Appalachians
Chapter 7. Roadblocks To Recovery: Transportation and Energy Development Fragmenting Penn’s Woods
Chapter 8. Wild Playgrounds: New York’s Shawangunks and Catskills
PART III: From the Adirondack Mountains to the Gaspé Peninsula
Introduction. Why Protect Wildways: Lessons Confirmed by TrekEast on Importance of Wildlife Corridors
Chapter 9. Our Wildest Lands Are Not Wild Enough: Adirondack Park and Surrounds
Chapter 10. For Whom the Forest Works: Northern Appalachians and Maine Woods
Chapter 11. Where Salmon Still Spawn: Near-Boreal New Brunswick and Quebec
Chapter 12. Can We Get There From Here? Is an Eastern Wildway Still Possible?
About the Author